By Martin Heinig
Digital technology advancements in augmented and virtual reality as well as in artificial intelligence (AI) over the last decade have provided an incredible ability to capture and hold our collective imaginations. These technologies have transcended beyond the hype by offering immediately clear and convincing use cases for enterprises that bridge the physical and digital divide.
For example, AI-powered digital twins could provide incredible future-focused insights with simulations to anticipate and prevent supply chain disruptions. Employee onboarding could be individually tailored and optimized to deepen human connection in a hybrid world.
Immersive technologies are a broad umbrella that includes extended reality — virtual, augmented, mixed– 3D displays, spatial audio, gesture recognition, spatial sensing, speech recognition, haptics, and the metaverse. With the metaverse projected by Accenture to create a $1 trillion revenue opportunity by the end of 2025, these continuums of experiences and technologies have the potential to shape how customers and employees engage with businesses. That’s why organizations are increasingly turning to SAP and its partners to help them completely transform their business.
The SAP and Accenture Partnership
To support our mutual customers, SAP and Accenture have teamed up to create immersive experiences and business models that are built on SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP), which offers future-ready interfaces contextualized with business data and processes. Combining immersive services on SAP BTP with Accenture’s technology vision, proven methodologies, industry experiences, and skilled practitioners, organizations could pilot and scale solutions with trusted partners.
With these services, organizations can offer digital experiences that can enrich employees’ onboarding, attract digital native talent, and empower users to operate more collaboratively and unlock efficiencies like never before.
Immersive services on SAP BTP could support customers to leverage their SAP business capabilities and data to capture value through differentiated business models and experiences. Accenture’s expertise in immersive application development, industry expertise, and innovation methodologies will help customers realize and scale end-to-end immersive applications in every industry.
Watch this video to learn more about the SAP and Accenture partnership:
As the two companies continue their collaboration, customers can benefit from this partnership by exploring the following high-value use cases.
Hybrid Business Steering
Hybrid business steering empowers enterprises to manage and optimize their business collaboratively by enabling analytics, outcome simulations, and next-gen human-computer interactions on digital twins across the entire company business landscape. The intent of the hybrid business steering use case is to enable users to:
- Interact with data more intuitively and operate assets safely in an immersive and engaging digital experience
- Proactively monitor asset health and predict potential asset downtime
- Visualize the movement of goods through a supply chain network in real time, zoom in on specific data points, and manipulate data using virtual tools and interfaces
- Simulate different scenarios and assess the impact of business decisions before implementing them in the real world
The hybrid business steering use case demonstrates how customers could consume SAP data more easily and leverage their existing SAP landscape for immersive business applications.
Digital twins are increasingly being used in a wide range of asset intensive industries, including industrial manufacturing, automotive, energy, aerospace, and construction. They are an important tool for developing and testing new products and systems before they are built — saving time and money while reducing risk.
Augmented Employee Experience
Bridging the physical and digital world is what makes employee experiences like onboarding and mergers and acquisitions strong use cases for immersive technologies. Organizations with a strong onboarding process average 82% higher retention rates. Despite these benefits, only 12% of U.S. employees say their company does a “good job” of onboarding. The augmented employee experience use case helps employees to:
- Experience the company culture, mission, organizational structure, and team
- Tour office facilities in the digital campus
- Learn from leaders with role-specific questions
- Upskill on new products and projects with self-paced immersive learning
- Meet colleagues in a fun way
Importantly, employees can move at their pace. As part of their hyper-personalized and contextualized onboarding experience, they can learn and re-learn, ask as many questions as needed until they are familiar — all in a fascinating virtual environment that can be configured to suit their personal needs.
Organizations benefit from making it easier to onboard employees, reducing onboarding time and costs. The impact continues as existing employees grow, get promoted, and transfer between departments. This also helps businesses retain valuable and experienced talent within the organization and during mergers and acquisitions.
The augmented employee experience use case shows how employees could explore an organization, meet colleagues, and learn role-based skills in a safe environment while saving time and costs and increasing employee health and safety.
Customers and partners interested in early access can contact email@example.com.
Martin Heinig is head of SAP New Ventures & Technologies.
Accenture and SAP Collaborate to Deliver Transparent, Resilient and Sustainable Supply Chains on SAP Business Network
By Sankar Kaliaperumal and Muhammad Alam
Accenture and SAP have expanded their strategic relationship to focus on the accelerated delivery of transparent, resilient, and sustainable supply chains across key industries on SAP Business Network. The collaboration aims to offer customers increased transparency and visibility across assets and inventory, as well as faster value realization with SAP Business Network.
Ongoing disruption has taken its toll on the global supply chain. In response, organizations have invested heavily to boost inventory, processes, and capacity. In fact, Accenture research reveals that 61% of chief supply chain officers say they’ve been applying new technologies, ways of working, and AI in order to reinvent core processes, And 60% say they will be reinvesting in these areas over the next two years.
The opportunity now is to create synergies and efficiencies between processes and stakeholders and to unify all the points of interaction and integration. By doing so, organizations can collaborate, connect, transact, and partner on shared processes and information with trading partners across the supply chain.
With this in mind, Accenture and SAP are helping extend the power of the SAP Business Network with new capabilities, assets, and accelerators for:
- Logistics: Capabilities to collaborate with carriers, track goods in transit, and capture and validate data related to emissions and product genealogy help to ensure that trading partners are operating in a sustainable way
- Procurement: Responsible sourcing capabilities monitor for suppliers’ compliance with metrics and values in the network
- Supply Chain: Business to business (B2B) integrations support cross-industry supply chain processes and create specialized solutions for supply chain planning, purchase order collaboration, and quality management processes
- Asset Management: Intelligent capabilities optimize asset performance by using data in a central repository that shares information with equipment, asset operators, manufacturers/OEMs, and suppliers, which increases trust and collaboration between parties and results in faster completion of maintenance and repairs with fewer errors, improving the availability of the asset
“Supply chains of the future require total enterprise reinvention, enabled by data and a strong digital core,” said Caspar Borggreve, senior managing director and lead of the Accenture SAP Business Group. “Accenture’s deep expertise in supply chain management, SAP Business Network capabilities, transformation strategies, and leading industry practices can help our clients realize value faster with future-ready supplier networks that bring new visibility into operations, increase agility, and reduce sustainability risk.”
One organization that realized value faster from increased supply chain resiliency and its ambitious procurement transformation is Baker Hughes, an energy technology company that provides solutions to energy and industrial companies worldwide.
“Baker Hughes’ partnership and collaboration with Accenture and SAP played a big part in the successful transformation of our procurement operations and supplier enablement in 120 countries,” said Sharad Mantri, senior director and global IT leader at Baker Hughes Company. “Accenture helped us establish a modern and integrated technology infrastructure to simplify procurement processes and increase supply chain transparency and resiliency.”
Customers like Baker Hughes benefit from Accenture and SAP’s combined knowledge, resources, global presence, and unique ability to scale with multiple and parallel projects going live simultaneously. For supply chain transformations, Accenture and SAP leverage a wide range of capabilities, use cases, assets, custom prototypes, preconfigured solutions, and purpose-built accelerators for focused industries in consumer packaged goods, high-tech, and manufacturing.
Sustainability and resiliency are top of mind for companies across all industries, which is creating a sense of urgency for a solution like SAP Business Network. Working together with Accenture, SAP is helping customers address common industry-specific needs and challenges with the largest and most comprehensive business network, trusted by millions of companies around the world.
Accenture was recently honored with the 2023 SAP Pinnacle Award for Cloud Business Transformation – Sales Success and SAP Global Intelligent Spend and Business Network Partner Excellence Award 2022 for Sales Success – Large Enterprise.
Sankar Kaliaperumal is managing director of the ACN Technology practice and North America SAP Ariba Lead at Accenture.
Muhammad Alam is president and chief product officer for Intelligent Spend and Business Network at SAP.